Future Simple

Basic form

Subject + WILL + Verb (present form)

Quick examples

  • I will clean up my room. I promise!
  • The telephone is ringing. I will pick it up!
  • I think it will rain.
  • He will stay there for hours, doing nothing.

The Future Simple is used in many situations such as when making promises or predictions.

Use

  1. Promises
  2. Unplanned actions
  3. Predictions based on experience or intuition
  4. Habits (obstinate insistence, usually habitual)
Going to

You can also use going to to express future. We use it to express predictions based on observing the present situation:

  • It's going to rain. Look at the clouds!
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Use 1: Promises

The first use of the Future Simple to make promises.

  • I promise I will buy you this toy.
  • Promise you will never leave me!

Use 2: Unplanned actions

Use this tense also to talk about unplanned (spontaneous) decisions.

  • Don't worry! I will help you with this problem.
  • I will close the window. It's starting to rain.

Use 3: Predictions

We often use the Future Simple when making a prediction based on experience or intuition.

  • It will rain in a moment.
  • It will get more difficult.

Use 4: Habits

The last use of this tense is interesting: we can also use the Future Simple to express habits.

  • She will bit her lip if she is thinking or if she's nervous about something.
  • He will always make noise when we are sleeping.
Shall

You can also use shall to express future in Future Simple. It is more formal than will, and usually appears in formal speeches, agreements or guarantees.

Examples:
  • The guarantee shall be provided on the following conditions: (...)
  • We shall never surrender!

Form

Contracted forms (more)

WILL = 'LL
  • She'll dance = she will dance

WILL + NOT = WON'T
  • She won't dance = she will not dance

Declarative Sentences

Subject + Auxiliary verb + Verb
e.g. I/a dog etc. will e.g. work/go/make
Remember

Remember, you should never use will to say what somebody has already arranged or decided to do in the future:

  • Correct: Mike is moving to New Jersey next month.
  • Incorrect: Mike will move to New Jersey next month.

Read more

  • I think he will regret his choice. (Use 3)
  • I will come back at 10 p.m. (Use 1)
  • If you will keep your watch half an hour slow it is hardly surprising that you are late for your appointments. (Use 4)
  • John will keep dropping his towel on the floor after a bath. (Use 4)
  • I will visit my grandma at hospital. (Use 1 or Use 2)
  • Let's buy the snacks at the supermarket — it will be cheaper that way. (Use 3)

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[ When I'm 60 years old, I will be completely bald. (Use 3) ]

Questions

Auxiliary verb + Subject + Verb
will e.g. I/a dog etc. e.g. work/go/make

Remember

We often use "will" with:

probably, most likely I'll probably drop in on uncle.
I think This gift is great. I think we'll love it.
I'm sure It's not going to be boring there. I'm sure there will be a lot of boys at your age
I wonder (if, what, when, etc.) It's a bit late. I wonder if he'll come.
I expect I haven't seen Matthew today. I expect he'll call today.

  • Will he be surprised when he sees me? (Use 3)
  • Will Mark be able to do the shopping before 10 a.m.? (Use 3)
  • Will there be plenty of people in church? (Use 3)
  • Will you study harder? (Use 1)

Negative Sentences

Subject + Auxiliary verb + Verb
e.g. I/a dog etc. will not e.g. work/go/make
  • I won't take any heavy equipment with me. (Use 2)
  • I'm sorry I won't be able to help you with your English today. (Use 2)
  • I expect that Sally will not clean up her room, unless you help her. (Use 3)

Check your understanding!

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